Creativity Can Take you Everywhere

Blog by Trip Wheeler, President SB Value

Success is moving from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm.
— Winston Churchill

…and finding success from the ashes of failure is all about tenacious creativity. I’ve seen it do some amazing things in my career.

An example that bridged a gap in sales.

Gillette was a client of mine and struggled with flat sales in between product launches. With a little creativity we came up with a campaign called the Gillette Young Guns – a platform of aspirational athletes that potential male customers of Gillette looked up to and had affection for. The promotion was one of the most successful in Gillette’s history and allowed them to grow market share between new products for pennies on the dollar.

What do you do during slower seasons?

Are you ‘accepting’ that as routine down time, or are you working creatively to fill those gaps with those ‘crazy ideas’ that got pushed aside because you are so busy the rest of the year

For example:

·      Outsource some of that idea generation and execution. Interns from local culinary schools are fantastic at looking at your business in a brand-new light.

·      Attend industry and networking events like NACE and ICA to gain inspiration, advice and insights.

·      Take that ‘down’ time to develop a unique ‘delivery item’ to drop off at businesses, venues, hotels, etc. introducing your business and inviting them to taste a sample.

·      Shoot video footage, stage photos, examine your website and social media.

·      Do everything your competition is not. That’s right, don’t fall into that trap. Set yourself apart. Be the ‘official picnic’ caterer for your community. Offer prix-fixe items for pick up or delivery during the ‘symphony in the park events.’ Get in front of as many people as you can that will become your brand ambassadors to fill your books the rest of the year.

Thinking creatively to succeed in a new market.

At SB Value, we had to think creatively from day one. In our inception in 2013, we focused on helping over 400 sports and racing facilities save money on their food and concession purchases. When we pivoted the business towards the catering side, getting the word out was difficult until we realized, “Who do caterers trust? Other caterers.” So, after that revelation, the answer was obvious! We partnered with some of the most successful and respected caterers (and organizations) in the industry and two years later 500 caterers are enjoying the benefits of better prices of our program.

Do not go it alone.

Creativity for me is looking at a challenge from different angles (financial, sales, perception, product, opportunity, branding, etc.). The solution does not always come instantly, but if I involve other bright, respected people, especially those that have differing views, in the end I am always better off if I invest in some creative thinking!